Help special children learn dance
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About the NGO
Childlife Preserve Shishur Sevay
Three-year-old Masum, for instance, was found abandoned under a train seat in 2013. She then developed pneumonia, sepsis and meningitis, and had a cerebral stroke. She was brought to Shishur Sevay as a fragile child with seizures, spasms and recurrent respiratory infections.
With the care provided at the home - from special educators and nurturing older “sisters” - Masum thrived and her sense of awareness grew. She has developed favourite caretakers, hums along at prayer time, participates in the inclusive dance classes and is always a part of the community.
But there are many Masums who need help.
India will likely have 24million orphans by 2021 with 6million in the eastern region (Bihar, Orissa, Jharkhand and West Bengal), according to a study. Shishur Sevay work in West Bengal to help the most vulnerable of this population – the girl child.
Ganga arrived aged four, weighing just seven kilos. She had no use of her arms and legs and couldn’t even lift her head. Today she loves school and has completed Class 4. She aspires to walk, talk and dance, but her strongest desire is to learn. She is now able to use a Tobii Eye Tracker that allows her to control the computer and speech with her eyes - and wants to write a book.
While the children like Ganga will never live independently, Shishur Sevay will never abandon them and are committed to their continual care.
Their success is seen in the children that they’ve fostered over the years. The girls came to Shishur Sevay from the West Bengal Child Welfare Committee as a result of abandonment, abuse or the death of their families. Over the years, in this loving environment, the girls have learned to aspire – they are potential doctors, teachers, dancers, or anything they can dream of becoming.
As founder Dr Michelle Harrison says: "The children are growing in all spheres, including their moral values of compassion and responsibility for helping each other, especially their sisters with disabilities. We need funds to build an endowment that will sustain the lives of these children and others."